We continue a multi-post series on the importance of volunteering as we count down to Frontline, the volunteer training event of the year at the Summit. 

We’re just a couple of days away from the behemoth Frontline weekend.  If you are a part of the Summit and are not planning to be there, I have an assignment for you: stop reading this blog, take out your calendar, and schedule a couple of uninterrupted hours for yourself on Saturday afternoon.  You will need that time to kick yourself in your hinderparts repeatedly.  If you get tired of kicking yourself, feel free to call on a friend to help.  (If you don’t know what hinderparts are, you’re beyond help.)

Let me be clear, just in case you’ve been living in a cave for the past few weeks: Frontline is going to be amazing.  You will laugh.  You will cry.  You will laugh so hard you’ll cry.  You will be stretched and trained and you’ll be able to dream with your pastors and staff on what God is going to do next around here.  And if you miss it…well…better get out that calendar.

Today, we’re talking about taking a step.  In years and years of working with volunteers (is that a country song?), I’ve discovered that the issue is almost never talent…we have more talented people in the church than you can count.  It’s almost never time…people find a way to do what is important.  The biggest hurdle for a potential volunteer to overcome is taking the first step.

Please understand: today’s church has done a lot to help foster that.  We stand on a stage, our eyes glistening with tears, and beg people to join ministries that already look like sinking ships.  We invite people to “help out” with a ministry, and then lock them in a dungeon room with 74 fifth grade boys and a stack of Bible crossword puzzles, never to check in on them again.  We hand out unrealistic expectations and assign people to teams they’re not wired for, and we wonder why the volunteer back door is flapping in the breeze.

If you’re new at the Summit, I know that deciding on a specific ministry can be somewhat overwhelming.  I’ve seen the looks in some of your eyes, and honestly, you look like J.D. Greear at Golden Corral.  Sing in the choir or play with kids?  Greet guests or brew coffee?  Direct traffic or host a SummitLIFE group?  Greasy pork chop or greasy meatloaf? (oops…I jumped illustrations.  Sorry.)

Our goal at Frontline is to make your decision as easy as possible.  On Friday night, you’ll get a 30,000 foot view of a majority of the ministries at the Summit.  We’ll talk about them from the stage and even give you a booklet with job descriptions for over 60 volunteer teams.  On Saturday, you can choose from various team trainings where you’ll hear the heartbeat of the ministries where you have an interest.

And finally, you’ll have the opportunity to sign up to take that all-important first step.  By signing up at Frontline, you’re not signing your life away.  We won’t ask for a lock of your firstborn’s hair or coax you into selling your soul to kidslife.  We will ask you to take a step.  Sign up to observe in one or two ministries.  Take ‘em for a test drive.  Kick the tires.  Get to know the people on the teams and find out if that team is right for you.  If it’s not, no problem.  You can always try something else until you’ve found your fit.

So take a step.  Get your hinderparts to Frontline and be a part of changing the Triangle…one step at a time.